Extend your Visa
Sometimes the 30 day visa you will get, when you enter the country is
not enough time to explore all the beauty of Koh Phangan.
Once your visa is expired, you have to pay a 500 Baht to the Immigration
Police for each day 'Overstay'. The maximum fine is 20.000 Baht ... but
don't try this limit, you could get in serious problems if you overstay
In case you entered the country with a 2 month visa, you can take one
of the ferries in Thong Sala or Haad Rin to get the Samui Immigration
Office in Koh Samui. There you can extend your current visa for another
month for a 1.900 Baht fee.
Before it was even possible to extend a one month visa for another 15
day, but it seem to changed now to 10 days, which makes no sense anymore,
because it's 1.900 as well ... so no big difference to pay for overstay.
New visa on arrival
When you cross a border into Thailand you will get a visa-on-arrival.
From Koh Phangan the nearest border crossing is at Ranong into Burma,
other options are Malaysia, Laos and Cambodia.
Many travel agencies on Koh Phangan offer a daily Visa-Run to Burma for
around 1.500 - 1.900 Baht. But you can travel by yourself as well. Take
the ferry to Surat Thani, from there you can take a local bus (Bus Station,
and only there) or the 'Farang Shuttle' (this is where the agencies will
put you in) to Ranong. Once you arrived there take a taxi to the immigration
office. From there you can walk to the pier (about 10 minutes). This is
the last place where you can get a 10 Dollar Note for the unique rip-off
price of 500 Baht. At the pier you should look out for boats just about
to leave and offer the driver 100 Baht for the round trip (but don't pay,
until you are back). There will be packs of scoundrels telling you that
the fare is 300 Baht, just ignore them, Thais and Burmese in comparison
have to pay 30 Baht for one way.
Before you arrive with the boat at Kaw Thaung you have to hand over your
passport with the 5 dollar to the driver, who will pass it to an burmese
immigration officer in a funny tiny hut at a small island in front of
Since 2007 you have to pay now 10 $ for a visa on arrival in Burma, and you have to go inside a 'upgraded' (now they have computers and behave more friendly) immigration hut on the burmese side by yourself and get your passport stamped.
On the burmese side the best thing to do is to get back on
the boat after having your passport stamped, except you are interested in low quality, dangerous
goods as faked Viagra, Whiskey and cigarettes that taste like smoking a newspaper.
A good place to stay in Ranong, is 'Casa Theresa', bad experience I had in 'Tanatwan
If you start your journey with the 'Night Boat' (leaves 10 pm from Thongsala
Pier), you can make it back until next day afternoon, but it's horrible
and personally I don't recommend this.
Since 2006 I do all my 'Ranong Visa Runs' on motorbikes, it's much more fun than on the crappy mini bus, and in comparison to the reckless driving style of the mini bus pilots, also more safer.
It's easy to navigate on the mainland, you could drive all the way from Don Sak (where the car ferry arrives) to Ranong without a road map, because all signs are in english as well, but if you want to cruise on the small roads, a map is a great help.
If you are interested in doing a visa run or just touring around on the mainland, contact us, we do regular trips with friends.
Multiple Entry Visa in Malaysia
A trip to Penang is worth for people who want to get a double or multiple
entry visa. Penang is an island in Malaysia not far from the border. Travel
agencies offer train and bus tickets to Penang.
When you arrive in Penang, look first for a place to stay, since the
visa application will take two days (sometimes longer, if you unlucky
and got into a row of public holidays). The easiest way is to give your
passport to one of the visa agencies near Chulia Street. But if you want
to save a few bucks, you can do this by yourself.
Royal Thai Consulate
No. 1, Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman
Phone: (60-4) 2268029, 2269484
Fax: (60-4) 2263121
Penang is a really boring place, if you just came from Thailand, don't
expect any night life, only the good indian food is a positive aspect
of this place.
... to be continued
Pier Ranong, Border Burma
maybe the smelliest place on earth, watch your steps, the stairs are
before arriving on the burmese side
10 US $ gets you a 10 days visa
tiny immigration shack on burmese side
the boat driver will bring in your passport
Kaw Thaung pier at burmese side
don't trust these guys ...
border to Laos
Vientiane is just a few kilometers away
Komtar Tower, Penang, Malaysia
... pushed it twice ... but nothing happed
Somewhere in Penang
keep in mind, Malaysia is a 'no fun' place that's why they do holiday